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17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
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ScienceShot: Strong Jaws, Tiny Index Fingers
14 February 2012 7:02 pm
Kirk Douglas may have nabbed man's-man roles in Spartacus and other films by virtue of his jutting jaw. But casting directors seem to have missed one of the actor's manlier traits: a stubby index finger. Scientists have known that men boasting traditionally more masculine mandibles—think Douglas's iconic cleft chin—also tend to have short pointer fingers relative to their ring fingers. But no one knew if the trend held true for kids not yet through puberty. To find out, researchers photographed 17 boys between 4 and 11 years old. And, sure enough, those with more petite trigger fingers also bore bigger, rounder chins (at right). They also had smaller foreheads and thicker eyebrows, the group reports online in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. High levels of in utero testosterone may help to shape both the digit mismatch and the lads' faces, pointing the importance of the hormone even early in life. Call it the Spartacus, Jr. effect.
See more ScienceShots.